3 Ways to Feel Your Feelings (even when they feel gross)

You did it. You did all of the self-improvement work and now your life is perfect. You love your job. You love life is ideal. You have that car/home/puppy. Everything is perfect and your journey of personal development is over.
Yeah right. I hate to be the bearer of truthiness, but that’s never going to happen. You know why? Life. Bad things happen every day. Our stress limits are tested even on wonderful days. And no matter how good your mediation practice is, you will still feel things. And that’s how it should be.
The goal shouldn’t be happiness 100% of the time. The goal should be self acceptance and a constant desire to do what’s best for you (whatever that may be in that exact point in your life with permission for it to change). A lot of suffering and staying stagnant in your life stems from suppressing your feelings. The more we fight what we are actually feeling the more it will continue to present itself as you move along on your journey. How freeing would it be to just allow yourself to feel?
Need to cry? Go ahead and do it. Something funny? Laugh out loud. Something on your mind? Speak your truth. You give yourself permission to feel and your feelings give you permission to live fully. Here are 3 tips to help you process what you’re feeling instead of shoving those feelings down.
  1. Journal. And not the recite your day kind. My clients know I call my style of journaling the “word vomit” and technique. We censor our thoughts from turning into words for fear of what they may do. By writing down our thoughts we give them life, and ultimately less power over our minds. Sit down with a timer (5-10 minutes is fine) and let a free flow of words go from your mind to the paper. I have clients tell me they go into a trance-like state. I recommend you re read your entry and highlight significant sentences or themes from your dump sesh.
  2. Meditate. But not with the idea of clearing your mind completely. Sit down in quiet, or with some very gentle music on in the background. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Count to 3 on your inhales and 3 on your exhales. After a couple of rounds of breathing like this allow your mind to focus on whatever you are feeling. Return to focusing on your breathing when you it becomes uncomfortable or if your brain gets stuck in a thought loop. Eventually you will either come up with a solution or you will feel at peace with what’s going on. Worried about time? Set a timer and keep returning to this practice as many times as you need to.
  3. Move your damn body. Do some yoga. Lift some weights. Take a spin class. Do something that is physically challenging and makes you sweat. When you move you feel. The movement will make things appear clearer in your mind and your body will be happy too.
I give you full permission to feel anything you need to. Good, bad, amazing, deeply terrible. No matter what you are feeling, no matter how hard something may seem, you got this. And when you need a reminder of how much of a warrior you are, I’ll be here cheering for you and reminding you to let yourself feel it all.

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